15 Sep 2022 7:38 AM GMT
The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday upheld an order of the District Magistrate passed against a rape-murder accused under Section 3 (2) of the National Security Act, 1980 as it noted that crimes against minor girls create a sensation in the locality and it is bound to disturb public order.With this, the bench of Justice Rajan Roy and Justice Shekhar Kumar Yadav dismissed a habeas corpus...
The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday upheld an order of the District Magistrate passed against a rape-murder accused under Section 3 (2) of the National Security Act, 1980 as it noted that crimes against minor girls create a sensation in the locality and it is bound to disturb public order.
With this, the bench of Justice Rajan Roy and Justice Shekhar Kumar Yadav dismissed a habeas corpus plea filed by the accused (Ram Sewak) challenging the detention order passed against him by the DM under the National Security Act, 1980.
The Court also discarded the argument made by the accused that since the offence was allegedly committed in a secluded place, there was no possibility of public order being disturbed as it stressed that merely because the offence was committed in a secluded area, it does not mean that public order cannot be disturbed.
"An incident involving rape and murder of a minor girl is bound to send shock waves and create a sense of fear and terror amongst residents of the locality. Crimes on women and crime on minor girls create sensation in the locality wherein the residents become fearful of well being of women, especially girls in their family. It is bound to disturb public order. Crime of rape and murder on a minor girl can be committed only by a depraved person with a hardened criminal mentality who lacks sensitivity and emotions towards the fairer sex, especially small children. Such an offence cannot be said to be an individual offence against the person of the deceased. Crime, generally, is not only against the individual in respect to whom it is committed but also against the society, but it is more so, in the case of rape and murder of a girl child as such crimes, send shock waves throughout the society," observed the bench as it dismissed the habeas corpus plea filed by the accused.
The case in brief
The District Magistrate passed the impugned order against the Accused under Section 3 (2) of the National Security Act, 1980 on the ground that the minor girl was raped and then murdered with the use of silk lace and her body was hidden in a sack of husk.
The order of the District Magistrate also recorded that the incident was gruesome and of such nature that it created an environment of fear in the area, the people of the area were anguished and angry, they collected in large numbers and the general tempo of life in the area was disturbed. The Order further noted that the entire area where the crime had been committed was tense for several days and police had to be deployed to restore the confidence of the public.
The police had to be called from various police stations to meet the needs of the situation and instill confidence in the public. The District Magistrate also referred to the report of the Station House Officer, Rampur Kala in this regard which mentioned the terror and fear created by the incident in the public of the locality, women, and children got frightened on account of the diabolical act of the petitioner, small girls stopped going out of their houses, some of the shops were closed, girl children were not being sent to school.
Consequently, the District Magistrate passed the order against the accused while he was in District Jail, Sitapur in connection with the aforesaid crime and had applied for bail as he opined that there was a likelihood of the petitioner being enlarged on bail and this information had created terror and fear in the locality.
Taking into account the material on record in the form of statements of Gram Pradhan, etc. as also newspaper items recording the impact of the incident on the residents of the local area, the Court observed that the case was not a simple case of law and order, but, a case where the District Magistrate had correctly formed the opinion that public order got disturbed and in the event, the petitioner is enlarged on bail, there was a likelihood of repetition of such crimes.
The Court further observed that it was not a case involving merely law and order, but, a case where the public order got disturbed initially, and thus, the District Magistrate was well within his rights to form a subjective opinion on the basis of objective material before him that in the event the petitioner was enlarged on bail it would prejudice the public order and create fear and terror in the locality.
"The fact that the petitioner does not have a prior criminal history is irrelevant considering the impact of his alleged crime on the even tempo of life in the locality as already discussed. We are not concerned as to whether the offence was actually committed by the petitioner or not as that is a matter which will be seen during the trial," the Court further remarked as it upheld the order of the District Magistrate and dismissed the writ plea of the accused.
Case title - Ram Sewak v. State Of U.P.Thru.Prin.Secy.Home Lucknow And Ors. [HABEAS CORPUS WRIT PETITION No. - 30758 of 2021]
Case Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (AB) 437
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